Ms Marit Kapla is a Swedish author and journalist. She was born in 1970 and grew up in the small village of Osebol in the mid-western parts of Sweden. She served as Artistic Director of Göteborg Film Festival 2007–2014, as Founder and Program Director of the festival’s digital streaming platform Draken Film 2014–2015 and during 2016–2020 she was one of two editors-in-chief of cultural journal Ord&Bild. She is a member of the board of PEN Sweden. In April 2019, she debuted with the book Osebol, an extraordinary work based upon interviews with almost all the residents of her home village. Osebol would grant her the 2019 August Prize for best fictional book, the Publicistklubben Prize Guldpennan 2019, the Studieförbundet Vuxenskolans författarpris 2019, Borås Tidning’s Debutant Prize 2020, Göran Palm-stipendiet 2021 as well as the Warwick Prize for Women in Translation 2022 and a shortlist placement for the British Academy Book Prize for Global Cultural Understanding 2022. Her latest book, Kärlek på svenska (eng. Love in Swedish) was published on August 24th 2022 and consists of interviews with people all over Sweden about love, made by documentary filmmaker Staffan Julén for his film with the same title.
© Picture Cato Lain
In Kärlek på svenska (Love in Swedish), a number of individuals of different ages and backgrounds speak open-heartedly of the love in their lives. Each person lives somewhere in Sweden, from Ystad in the south to Karesuando in the north. Their unique experiences and formulations form the core of this striking lyrical depiction of the terms and conditions of love in our time. The texts are quotations from verbatim interviews made by Staffan Julén for his documentary film also entitled Love in Swedish.
The reader will meet the 31 individuals one after another, from the oldest person interviewed to the youngest. The text is layed out like poetry, highlighting all the joy and grief that love brings us. The interviewed persons talk about:
Alice Staffan Beckman, 87: her beloved Karin’s last moment in life and how Karin reminded her of her early love Marianne with whom she broke up because her parents did not approve of Marianne’s background.
Inger Alfvén, 79: her first love, a girl in class called Anna with whom she had an intense non-physical friendship/relationship for a few years but ended up losing interest in when Anna became more similar in manners and behavior to Inger herself.
Lena Eklund, 79: how she fell in love with another woman at work and how society still often regards same sex relationships as something odd.
Maj Doris Rimpi, 77: life as a Sami artist, travelling all over the world and now living quietly in a cottage in the company of her two reindeer.
Doris Sundholm, 76: having been married over 50 years to Christer, running a supermarket together with him and raising three sons.
Gittan Frejhagen, 75: the gratitude she feels over starting a new life in her fifties with Lollo.
Marianne Davidson, 74: how she met Janne on a dating site and how the pandemic made her experience the comfort in a quiet life together with him and their dog.
Lasse Labba, 71: the restricted views on love and dancing in the religious Sami context of his youth and how he still met his partner at a dance, even though he was lousy at dancing.
Carl-Gustav Wachtmeister, 69: the strength you can build in a long marriage and what it takes for that marriage to overcome unfidelity.
Janne Björklund, 68: how he met Lin in Thailand, built a house there for her and her kids and how he now grieves her early death in cancer.
Mats Wikström, 65: what it feels like when a chaotic love affair gives you ‘broken heart syndrome’.
Hasse Karlberg, 61: what life is like together with Camilla, surrounded by their dogs, hens and innumerable other animals, helping them to overcome the challenges of bipolar syndrome.
Sanny Laurin, 61: what it is like to be left by your lover, the similarities between art and love and how creativity can comfort you when your heart is broken.
Maricarmen Sempértegüi, 59: leaving Bolivia for Sweden with three kids, trying to get away from machismo-defined, destructive patterns of relationships and finding a new future.
Anna Oldner Bengtsson, 56: what it is like to find great love late in life and to have to watch him pass away in illness a few years later.
Fabian Torsson, 55: falling head over heels in love on a dating site and struggling to make all the pieces in your new life fit together.
Beatrice Johansson, 55: coming to terms with a childhood influenced by a loveless father, now regularly travelling to an Italian convent to find love in the community of the nuns and the other guests.
André Estrada, 54: the difficulties of finding love and what it is like to be constantly living on your own.
Carina Lloyd, 54: finding love after divorcing the father of her children and now looking back at many years of a long distance relationship.
Tatjana Ristovski, 53: meeting your teenage sweetheart 27 years later, discovering that you are still right for each other.
Dmitri Plax, 50: the unfathomable grief when his beloved son Peter was murdered and how life became managable when he unexpectedly got new family members to care about.
Yasmine Garbi, 48: how she was unable to forget the short love affair with Michael and how they decades later finally got together.
Christofer Bocker, 43: dating in the time of COVID-19 when the border between Sweden and Norway all of a sudden was patrolled by military.
D’amour Nordkvist, 42: his own experiences of how coming from different cultures can create obstacles within a relationships .
Aslat Simma, 40: the small things that make love flourish and last in everyday life, like when your partner makes you coffee at just the right moment without you having to ask for it.
Erica Huuva Simma, 39: meeting your partner in class and the small but important steps towards forming a relationship and a family.
Helena Granström, 36: how the experience of being together with another person can never fully be shared with the other, no matter how physically close you are.
Benjamin Ulbricht, 34: met the love of his life in a convent, but for him it was never a question of choosing between love and God.
Francine Kaneza, 26: what you do when you realize after three years that your relationship is not based on love but on the other person’s need to control you.
Elias Bernmarker, 23: the process when you and your partner move into a deeper state of your relationship and for the first time tell each other that you love one another.
Ebba Akterin, 21: the pros and cons of Tinder dating and the paradox in that the person you are looking for might be just the kind of person that would never go on Tinder.